This Amazing Multiple Exposure Hannover Airport Takeoffs Photo Is Not Real

Illustration for article titled This Amazing Multiple Exposure Hannover Airport Takeoffs Photo Is Not Real

This image, created by Korean photographer Ho-Yeol Ryu, purportedly shows a multiple-exposure tilt-shift image of every plane taking off at Hannover Airport in Germany in the span of one day. Amazing, right? Yeah, except that it's not real. Here's why.

The image has been around for a while, but this weekend it once again made the internet meme site rounds. And once again, it's being purported to be a shot of every plane taking off from Germany's Hannover Airport. Except there's no possible way that it could have been taken there.

Steven Frischling, professional photographer and global airline consultant, (follow him on Twitter here) explains why:

1) The positioning of the aircraft in relation to the terminal behind it, even accounting for telephoto lens compression, would have the aircraft taking off from taxiway beside Runway 27L, rather than the runway itself.

2) The image shows multiple Boeing 747 and 777 variants airborne at a point in the runway where these aircraft would first be lifting their nose off the ground, or still be firmly on the ground before becoming airborne.

3) Many aircraft appear to be flying towards the terminal or away from the terminal; a direction an aircraft would not fly moments after lifting its wheels off the ground.

4) Proportionally aircraft sizes do match size dimensions of real-life aircraft when matched to scale. For example an ATR-72-500 turbo prop never appears larger than Boeing 777-200 wide body jet when viewed from a consistent angle and distance.

5) Many airlines in the image do not service Hannover-Langenhagen Airport and have never flown anywhere near Europe.

6) Many of the airlines and aircraft in the images would never, and have never, crossed paths, such as an Air New Zealand Link ATR-72-500 and JetBlue Airbus A320 …not to mention the U.S. registered Cessna 172S flying through the image.

7) A number of the aircraft depicted in this image can be directly found in the photo archive … including the U.S. registered Cessna 172S. The images are credited to various photographers in various geographic locations ranging from Texas to New Zealand.


Now, this doesn't change the fact that it's an amazing image — it just means it's not the shot that many websites purport it to be. What it really is, according to some, is Ryu's attempt to show the impact of air traffic on our world.

And it definitely succeeds at doing that.

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Look at the climb rate and angle of ascent on that turbo prop!